Citizenship; verification of acquisition of German citizenship with birth in Germany

The registry office checks whether a child of foreign parents has acquired German citizenship by birth in accordance with Section 4 (3) of the Citizenship Act.


Since January 1, 2000, a child born in Germany to foreign parents acquires German citizenship at birth if at least one parent on the day of the child's birth

  • has been legally and habitually resident in Germany for 8 years, and
  • has a permanent right of residence or, as a citizen of Switzerland or a member of his or her family, a residence permit on the basis of the Agreement of 21 June 1999 between the European Community and its Member States and the Swiss Confederation on the free movement of persons.

As a rule, the child of foreign parents acquires a foreign nationality in addition to the German nationality at birth. He or she is therefore a multiple national.

If the child has not grown up in Germany and does not exclusively hold home citizenship of the European Union or Switzerland, he or she is generally obliged to choose between home citizenship and German citizenship after reaching the age of 21 (Section 29 StAG - Option Obligation). This obligation only exists if the child has received a letter between the ages of 21 and 22 explicitly pointing out this obligation.

Status: 06.03.2023

Responsible for editing: Bayerisches Staatsministerium des Innern, für Sport und Integration

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